When you start off looking for freelancing jobs, it may seem that casting a wide net into the online world is the best way to secure paid work.
While it certainly is a great way to find freelance jobs, you may find that you’re spreading yourself too thin and not securing the good-paying jobs you are looking for.
Are there any good paying freelance jobs near me?
Instead of hopping from freelance job board to job board, maybe now is the time to ask yourself:
“Are there any good paying freelance jobs near me?”
That’s right, you can find good paying freelance work right in your backyard!
Well, maybe not literally your backyard, but definitely within your local area.
Freelancing is not just an online thing – there are many businesses and companies in your own city that could benefit from employing your valuable services.
But how do you get started in finding good paying jobs close to home?
Here is a complete guide to getting started with freelancing for local businesses:
Why Would Local Companies Hire a Freelancer?
Some businesses in your area may not have a huge online presence but most still rely on online advertising and marketing to draw in clients and customers.
To do this, companies need a functioning and user-friendly website, clear and concise copy, informative content and a strong social media presence.
Even if a company doesn’t have a website, they need to get their name out into the community. Flyers, print ads and posts on Facebooks are great ways to advertise their business.
See where a freelancer might come in handy?
And while these companies could jump on the internet and find freelancers to do the jobs for them, there’s definitely an advantage in being able to meet face-to-face.
Ideas can be shared more clearly and trust can be better built when a client and freelancer can meet in person.
So don’t shy away from reaching out to local companies for freelance work – your chances are better than you think!
What You Need Before You Start Looking
Before you hit the proverbial pavement looking for a local freelance job, you need to set up a few things first.
The most important thing you should have is a website detailing who you are, your services, examples of your work and your rates.
You can opt for your own domain, which will give you a more professional and polished image. However, even a free site (such as a LinkedIn profile) is better than having nothing for potential clients to refer to.
Use your website to create a presence and establish yourself as a legit freelancer.
Apart from a website, you should also consider having business cards. This is crucial if you plan on offering your services face-to-face with local business owners.
Where to Look for Local Freelance Jobs
Networking is probably the number one best way to find local freelance work.
This means getting out into the community, either online or offline, and letting people know who you are.
In order to connect offline, go out into the community and bring along your business cards. As soon as you are asked what you do for a living, offer a card.
(You can use the site Meetup to find local meet-ups and events in your area.)
That person may have no need for a freelancer, but they may know someone who does.
Online, you can use platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook to connect with business owners in your community.
Be sure to include your skills and services in your social media profiles so that anyone who views it can quickly see that you are an experienced freelancer.
Don’t hesitate to also contact previous employers and even family and friends. Again, if they don’t need a freelancer, they may be able to pass your name along to someone who does.
While not many people reach for an actual copy of the Yellow Pages anymore, their online service is a great way to find lists of local businesses.
From there, you can look for businesses that align with your niche and expertise and get their contact information.
A good tip is to first check their website and its content.
While you don’t want to call a business out for their online deficits, it’s a good way to pitch the importance of your services.
For instance, if the site doesn’t have a blog, you can point out how companies with blogs receive 55% more traffic (true story). Or if their blog design is not user-friendly, you can offer your web design ideas for improving on it.
In the next section of this article, I’ll be going into more detail of how exactly to pitch your services to local businesses.
Freelance Job Boards by Location
Even though we’re trying to hone your job search to your local area, you can still use job boards to search for nearby companies seeking freelancers.
Boards such as ProBlogger allow you to designate your search term as well as location.
It’s a little less legwork than networking and reaching out to businesses. However, there may not be any local businesses actively seeking freelancers, so your search may come up with nothing.
Nonetheless, it’s always worth taking a peek at.
How to Pitch to Local Companies
Crafting your pitch to local companies is much the same as crafting any pitch, except you are likely walking into a situation where the business isn’t actively seeking a freelancer.
The main difference with a cold pitch than a job application is that you really have to clearly define your value as a freelancer and emphasize why a company should pay you to do this job.
You’re not only selling yourself, but your services as well.
Here are the key steps to creating an effective pitch for local companies:
1. Do Recon on the Business
This may sound like you’re doing super-secret spy work but really you are just taking a moment to learn about the company.
Pay particular attention to their values and anything that really stands out to you. You’re going to use this in your pitch to build a connection.
The best area of a site to find this type of information is the company’s about page.
Also, as I mentioned above, see where their deficits lie when it comes to their website – find the things that your expertise and services are going to be able to fix.
Check their blog (if they have one) to see what type of content they post and frequently they post it.
This is all going to be useful information for your pitch.
2. Dig Up Some Stats
Statistics are a great way to give potential clients an idea of the difference your services can make for their company.
Hubspot has a great list of blogging and business stats, but here are some extremely useful ones:
- 80% of internet users interact with both social media sites and blogs.
- Companies with blogs produce an average of 67% more leads monthly than companies that don’t blog.
- Businesses that blog get 55% more website visitors than businesses that don’t.
- 70% of people would rather learn about a company through articles rather than advertisements.
The proof is in the pudding when it comes to the importance of having a website and good content.
Instead of calling a business out for not having a blog, you can simply state one of the above statistics. They know they don’t have a blog – your goal is to tell them why they need one.
Same goes for any other services you can provide that will benefit their business.
3. Create a Pitch Template
A pitch template is a great guideline to have when writing cold pitches for local businesses – you just want to make sure you tailor it to the individual companies you are sending them to.
Here is the anatomy of a good, solid pitch:
- Personal address. Address the business owner directly and explain how you came across their business/site.
- Make a connection. Remember those values I told you to look for? Mention what really stood out to you and what you connected with.
- Mention that you are local. You want the person you are writing to know you are nearby and have a vested interest in local businesses.
- Drop those stats. If their business site is missing something, educate them with a statistic.
- Pitch your services. Tell them about the services you offer, but keep it short and simple.
- Call-to-action. End with a CTA, which could simply be asking the recipient to visit your site or to reply to your email.
Here is a simple template you can play around with:
Hi [Person’s Name],
My name is [Your Name] and I recently discovered your business through [How You Found Them].
I really love how [Connect with Business]!
I live in [City], so I am always looking for ways to connect with local businesses.
I noticed your blog is missing [Whatever Their Missing]. Did you know that [Drop a Stat]?
I am a freelancer [Position] with # years of experience [Briefly Describe Experience]. I would love to offer my insight and expertise to provide your company with [Your Services].
To find out more about what I do, I invite you to visit my site at [Site URL].
Thank you so much for your time!
Here is an example in action:
Hi Company Owner,
My name is Jane Doe and I recently discovered your business through a post my friend shared on Facebook.
I absolutely love that your business is so focused on environmental responsibility! I’m also a firm believer that small changes can lead to a greener and healthier life.
I live in Cityville, so I am always looking for ways to connect with local businesses.
When I visited your site, I noticed that you do not have a blog. Did you know that businesses that blog get 55% more website visitors than businesses that don’t?
I am a freelance writer with over 5 years of experience creating informative and readable content, specifically for blogs. I would love to offer my insight and expertise to provide your company with engaging and traffic-boosting content!
Thank you so much for your time!
Pretty simple, right? And highly effective!
Types of Jobs for Local Freelancers
If you’re just starting to get your feet wet in the world of freelancing, and are not sure what kind of services to offer, these types of freelance jobs can be extremely valuable to local businesses:
Copywriting is a specific style of writing that is more persuasive than blog content.
The goal of a copywriter is to help a person move from point A to point B – meaning that you are trying to “sell” the reader on what you are writing about.
This type of writing is typically used for sales pages, landing pages and other promotional content.
Blog writing involves so much more than simply throwing information into an article and posting on a site.
Many business owners aren’t the best writers or simply don’t have the time to create content for their sites.
Blog writers know how to craft content so that it’s readable, informative and valuable to readers and visitors.
Also, blog writing jobs are forever in demand, since driving traffic depends heavily on fresh and frequent content.
If you have a knack for website design and can navigate popular website platforms (such as WordPress), then you can offer services as a web developer.
A web developer is responsible for setting up a site, performing updates and posting new content.
This can be an invaluable service to business owners who only have the time to focus on their business and not on their website.
Social Media Manager
While the premise of using social media to market a company is pretty straightforward, finding the time to organize this form of content may be too much for business owners.
Social media managers are employed to manage a company’s social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.) in order to gain followers and promote the company’s brand and product.
Another important aspect of social media management is also interacting with users, which is akin to performing customer service duties.
Virtual assistant is kind of a catch-all term that describes a person who does a variety of assistive jobs for a company.
This may include data entry, schedule management, email replies and invoicing.
Anything that can be done remotely to support a company or business can be done by a virtual assistant.
Humans are extremely visual creatures and business owners know how important image is when having a successful brand.
Just like writing, many business owners do not have the time or skills to create visual content for their sites, business and social media presence.
If you’re handy with Photoshop, or can rock Canva like nobody’s business, you could be invaluable to a local company that needs help with graphic design.
Good Paying Freelance Jobs Near You
You really don’t have to look far to find good paying freelance jobs!
There are many businesses and companies in your area that could greatly benefit from your freelance services – you just have to reach out to them.
With the right attitude and approach, you could find yourself doing what you love for clients close to home.
What better way to build your own business as well as a strong sense of community?
Your turn! I want to know the struggles you are facing when it comes to finding local freelance jobs. Let me know in the comments!